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  • Justin 3:33 pm on August 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Crimson Tide, Denzel Washington, Gene Hackman, , , Steve Zahn, Tony Scott, Viggo Mortenson   

    DVD Rewind | Crimson Tide Review 

    Most likely because of the loss of Tony Scott, I threw in Scott’s Crimson Tide in wonderful HD Sunday afternoon.

    Being only 11 years old when the movie came out, it was really my introduction to Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman. A unknown Viggo Mortenson also has a supporting role in the film (with a even minor role played by James Gandolfini). There is the suspense of the possible nuclear strike in play, which is why Hackman and Washington are partnered together on the USS Alabama, a nuclear submarine sent out to Russia waters to proactively strike if need be…

    The real suspense is of course actually  between Hackman and Washington, which still holds up pretty well. I noticed this time around that I appreciated Hackman’s position a bit more than I used too, echoing the famous court scene at the end, where both are deemed right, and both wrong (with of course Washington being the real winner…). The dialogue between Hackman and Washington are great. Their roles in the movie are actually still my favorites for the actors, which I think is partially due to their chemistry on screen.

    One major strength of the movie is the music; composed by Hans Zimmer, I remember thinking, who is this guy? What else has he done, and I cant wait to hear more from him. It was this movie back in 1995 that really got me paying attention to a movie’s score (a few other movies def did thanks to James Horner). But the score for the movie is so loud, you would have to be deaf not to notice it take over scenes. At times, it is clear the music is not really to supplement whatever you’re watching, but instead is to really take movie watchers through the experience; sometimes taking over and leading the movie with the visual being the support (Dark Knight Rises anyone?). Def a style (along with great scores) that he is known for. The score for Crimson Tide not surprisingly went on to be used for countless movie trailers and tv spots. Zimmer then went on to score some of the biggest movies ever, from Gladiator (one of the best selling scores of all time) to The Dark Knight Rises.

    B+

    Note: I find when a movie uses its own score for its trailer (which rarely happens) like Crimson Tide does in the last 40 seconds , the movie ends up being pretty good. E.g. The Dark Knight Trilogy, Terminator 2 etc. Obviously this is one symptom of why a movie is great, but its not a bad indicator of what you’re in for.

     

     
  • paulywalnuts 5:08 am on March 2, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Daniel Espinosa, Denzel Washington, Robert Patrick, Ruben Blades, Ryan Reynolds, Vera Farmiga   

    SAFE HOUSE | 2nd best this year so far 

    Denzel Washington is a good cia agent gone rogue and has to be reigned in by a young cia agent that he schools along the way. Sounds like Training Day? I thought so from the previews … Training Day with a little Man on Fire thrown in for good measure. It’s not either movie, but it’s the second best I’ve seen this year behind Chronicle.

    The plot is not as straightforward as the marketing suggests, which is a very good thing. The character Denzel plays is definitely a badass and definitely on the wrong side of the law, but I rooted for him the entire time. He was more complex than the trailers led you to believe, and so was the plot. Ryan Reynolds and the character he plays contributed little to the movie, but the spy thriller plot delivers. In addition to Denzel, Vera Farmiga, Ruben Blades and Robert Patrick add to an incredible cast but I wish they had more screen time. Daniel Espinosa SHOULD be in much higher demand after a great job directing this … giving it the feel of the original Bourne movie. Sadly, his next project is with Nicolas Cage, so his short career may be over before it started.

    I’ve tried hard to say I liked it without giving away too much plot. It’s my second fave film of the year behind Chronicle, and it’s the #2 earner of the year behind the Vow. You’ll like it if you see it.

    "Hell no, Ryan Reynolds can't be on this poster. This is MY movie, dammit."

     
  • paulywalnuts 1:45 am on June 11, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Denzel Washington, Netflix   

    Netflix Pick of the Week: Unstoppable 

    For those of you unable to go to the movies this weekend, I’m making a suggestion. Rent Unstoppable. I know, I know … it looked a little too much like Denzel trying to do another feel good movie like Remember the Titans. And also like Remember the Titans, we can pretty much guess how it ends. But it’s a hell of a ride getting there.

    Background – Tony Scott is still searching for his magic touch from the 80s (Beverly Hills Cop II, Top Gun) or even his breakouts from the 90s (Crimson Tide) — but it’s a hell of a lot better than the last ten years of stuff he’s been putting out (Deja Vu, Man on Fire). Denzel is once again his muse, and Chris Pine is looking like less Captain Kirk and probably more like Captain down on his luck. Those two are all that stands in between a ginormous train carrying hazardous chemicals to Marcus’ hood and a happy ending (not that type of happy ending … not that type of movie). That’s all I expected when I picked it up. It delivered a lot more.

    The plot doesn’t get much richer, sadly, but Denzel and Pine’s characters are developed about as well as you could go. I was a little annoyed at the archetypical train workers, and folks taking pot shots at union workers (because all of you guys in non-union shops have NO ONE that’s lazy, right?) – but get past the rushed setup and you start to care about a few of the growing cast of characters. Just a few.

    Tony Scott’s a great action director. I wasn’t quite sure how you can make a train running 70 mph exciting for two hours (I’m imagining baby Stewie saying, “It’s still out of control … it’s still out of control … it’s still out of control … it’s still out of control … it’s still out of control … ” as Lois stares ahead without blinking) — but I didn’t know how he could make a submarine movie interesting, and he did. The usual tricks are on full display – panoramic areal shots, quick shots from multiple angles of the same person moving two feet, and the biggest action scenes greeted with little sound other than the soundtrack. But you know what … it’s fun getting there.

    It’s fun to know that this is based on a true story. Don’t yell “that didn’t really happen” at the screen, just wonder what you would have done if an out-of-control train full of chemicals was headed your way and you didn’t know what was going on. Enjoy the different ways they tried to stop it; appreciate the police/fire/rescue workers that were worried about their own families but trying to save everyone else’s; be sad for the families of people that actually died. And, if you actually don’t know how it ended in real life … Netflix is only a few clicks away.

    Be sure to rent the Unstoppable with Denzel Washington, not Wesley Snipes. We don’t all look alike. And please tell me how Ethan Supplee keeps showing up in Denzel Washington movies, or why Rosario Dawson is so hot but didn’t get any mention in my review. *sigh* Enjoy the weekend. Somebody go out and see Super 8 and write it up without spoilers.

     
    • Marcus 2:01 am on June 11, 2011 Permalink

      Pauly, I just saw this movie not kidding credits are rolling now. Reminds me of the Money Train with Woody Harrelson and i think Snipes. Denzel is good and makes the movie. It is what you would expect, a fun ride and you know how it ends.

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